Sensorial Education Essay

2122 Words Aug 5th, 2010 9 Pages
“The training of the senses must begin in the formative period of life if we wish to perfect them through education and make use of them in any particular human skill.” (Maria Montessori, The Discovery of the Child, Pg. 147)
Discuss the difference between sensorial impression and sensorial education. Give examples to show your understanding and explain why sensorial education is considered important in the Montessori classroom?

Maria Montessori believed in a necessary relationship between children and their environment. Children must find a properly prepared environment if they are to fully develop their unique human potentials. Sensorial material and the education provided by it serve as the base for this intellectual development.
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The materials are designed to help a child's mind develop the necessary skills for intellectual learning.
However, sensorial impressions of child's environment are not the same as sensorial education. Impressions are feelings, not an intellectual building block. The mind needs information to discriminate and appreciate different aspects of the environment. Therefore, Dr. Montessori provided sensorial educational materials for this purpose.
Sensorial apparatus provides a particular purpose and focus. It includes using the child's hands, senses, and encourages spontaneous activity.
The education given is not an exercise to sharpen the senses, but to allow a child to use his or her senses to understand what they really experience in the environment. When children are able to apply these sensory impressions to their environment, it is then seen as sensorial education.
The first few activities show the contrast in the sensory materials, and then graded materials. This teaches concepts of comparing and contrasting. For example, the first colors introduced are the primary colors, which are the most distinct of the chart. Red, blue, and yellow are introduced, and then the different shades and the combinations are introduced. Intellectual development is taking place here in a concentrated way on the impressions given by the senses.
Sensorial Exercises are designed by Maria Montessori to cover every quality that can be perceived by the senses

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